100+ Open Source/Free Security Tools
Security testing is a process to determine that an IS (Information System) protects data and maintains functionality as intended.
The six concepts that need to be covered by security testing are: confidentiality, integrity, authentication, authorization, availability, and non-repudiation.
Confidentiality: A security measure which protects against the disclosure of information to parties other than the intended recipient(s). Often ensured by means of encoding, using a defined algorithm and some secret information known only to the originator of the information and the intended recipient(s) (a process known as cryptography) but that is by no means the only way of ensuring confidentiality.
Integrity: A measure intended to allow the receiver to determine that the information which it receives has not been altered in transit or by other than the originator of the information. Integrity schemes often use some of the same underlying technologies as confidentiality schemes, but they usually involve adding additional information to a communication to form the basis of an algorithmic check rather than encoding all of the communication.
Authentication: A measure designed to establish the validity of a transmission, message, or originator. It allows a receiver to have confidence that the information it receives originated from a specific known source.
Authorization: The process of determining that a requester is allowed to receive a service or perform an operation.
Availability: Assuring information and communications services will be ready for use when expected. Information must be kept available to authorized persons when they need it.
Non-repudiation: A measure intended to prevent the later denial that an action happened, or a communication took place, etc. In communication terms, this often involves the interchange of authentication information combined with some form of provable time stamp.
Below are some open source/free tools that can help you with security testing as well as tools that will keep your system secure. Please use these tools ONLY for good.
- Aircrack: A suite of tools for 802.11a/b/g WEP and WPA cracking. It can recover a 40 through 512-bit WEP key once enough encrypted packets have been gathered. It can also attack WPA 1 or 2 networks using advanced cryptographic methods or by brute force. The suite includes airodump (an 802.11 packet capture program), aireplay (an 802.11 packet injection program), aircrack (static WEP and WPA-PSK cracking), and airdecap (decrypts WEP/WPA capture files).
- AirSnort: A wireless LAN (WLAN) tool that recovers encryption keys. Operates by passively monitoring transmissions, computing the encryption key when enough packets have been gathered
- Angry IP Scanner: A small open source Java application which performs host discovery (“ping scan”) and port scans. The old 2.x release was Windows-only, but the new 3.X series runs on Linux, Mac, or Windows as long as Java is installed. Version 3.X omits the vampire zebra logo. As with all connect()-based scanners, performance on Windows XP SP2 and Vista can be poor due to limitations added to tcpip.sys. The Angry FAQ provides details and workarounds. A short review was posted to nmap-dev
- Audit Record Generation and Utilization System (Argus): A fixed-model Real Time Flow Monitor designed to track and report on the status and performance of all network transactions seen in a data network traffic stream. Argus provides a common data format for reporting flow metrics such as connectivity, capacity, demand, loss, delay, and jitter on a per transaction basis. The record format that Argus uses is flexible and extensible, supporting generic flow identifiers and metrics, as well as application/protocol specific information
- Babel Enterprise: Manages the risk, dividing it by domains (groups or organizations), assets and policies. With all this, it can be checked, point by point the fully compliance of a security regulation, such as UNE-ISO/IEC 27001 or other ones that depend on this such as LOPD, SOX, etc. Requirement: Linux, Solaris, WinXP, HP-UX, IBM AIX
- Basic Analysis and Security Engine (BASE): A PHP-based analysis engine to search and process a database of security events generated by various IDSs, firewalls, and network monitoring tools. Its features include a query-builder and search interface for finding alerts matching different patterns, a packet viewer/decoder, and charts and statistics based on time, sensor, signature, protocol, IP address, etc.
- Bastille: Program “locks down” an operating system, proactively configuring the system for increased security and decreasing its susceptibility to compromise. Bastille can also assess a system’s current state of hardening, granularity reporting on each of the security settings with which it works. Bastille currently supports the Red Hat (Fedora Core, Enterprise, and Numbered/Classic), SUSE, Debian, Gentoo, and Mandrake distributions, along with HP-UX and Mac OS X. Bastille’s focuses on letting the system’s user/administrator choose exactly how to harden the operating system. In its default hardening mode, it interactively asks the user questions, explains the topics of those questions, and builds a policy based on the user’s answers. It then applies the policy to the system. In its assessment mode, it builds a report intended to teach the user about available security settings as well as inform the user as to which settings have been tightened
- Brute Force Binary Tester (BFBTester): Good for doing quick, proactive security checks of binary programs. BFBTester will perform checks of single and multiple argument command line overflows and environment variable overflows. It can also watch for tempfile creation activity to alert the user of any programs using unsafe tempfile names.Requirement: POSIX, BSD, FreeBSD, OpenBSD, Linux
- Burp Suite: An integrated platform for attacking web applications. It contains all of the Burp tools with numerous interfaces between them designed to facilitate and speed up the process of attacking an application. All tools share the same robust framework for handling HTTP requests, persistence, authentication, downstream proxies, logging, alerting and extensibility. Allows you to combine manual and automated techniques to enumerate, analyze, scan, attack and exploit web applications. The various Burp tools work together effectively to share information and allow findings identified within one tool to form the basis of an attack using another
- Cain & Abel: This Windows-only password recovery tool handles an enormous variety of tasks. It can recover passwords by sniffing the network, cracking encrypted passwords using Dictionary, Brute-Force and Cryptanalysis attacks, recording VoIP conversations, decoding scrambled passwords, revealing password boxes, uncovering cached passwords and analyzing routing protocols.
- Cheops-ng: A Network management tool for mapping and monitoring your network. It has host/network discovery functionality as well as OS detection of hosts. Cheops-ng has the ability to probe hosts to see what services they are running. On some services, cheops-ng is actually able to see what program is running for a service and the version number of that program
- chkrootkit: A flexible, portable tool that can check for many signs of rootkit intrusion on Unix-based systems. Its features include detecting binary modification, utmp/wtmp/lastlog modifications, promiscuous interfaces, and malicious kernel modules. Requirements: Linux, Mac OS X
- Clam AntiVirus (ClamAV): An open source (GPL) anti-virus toolkit for UNIX, designed especially for e-mail scanning on mail gateways. It provides a number of utilities including a flexible and scalable multi-threaded daemon, a command line scanner and advanced tool for automatic database updates
- Codenomicon Robust Open Source Software (CROSS): Program is designed to help open source projects fix critical flaws in their code. Codenomicon’s CROSS program provides open source projects with full access to its award-winning DEFENSICS testing solutions, helping the projects find and fix a large number of critical flaws very rapidly. Requirement: 130 protocol interfaces and formats
- Dsniff: A suite of powerful network auditing and penetration-testing tools. Includes many tools. dsniff, filesnarf, mailsnarf, msgsnarf, urlsnarf, and webspy passively monitor a network for interesting data (passwords, e-mail, files, etc.). arpspoof, dnsspoof, and macof facilitate the interception of network traffic normally unavailable to an attacker (e.g, due to layer-2 switching). sshmitm and webmitm implement active monkey-in-the-middle attacks against redirected ssh and https sessions by exploiting weak bindings in ad-hoc PKI. It handles pretty much all of your password sniffing needs.
- EtherApe: A graphical network monitor for Unix modeled after etherman. Features link layer, IP and TCP modes, EtherApe displays network activity graphically with a color coded protocols display. Hosts and links change in size with traffic. It supports Ethernet, FDDI, Token Ring, ISDN, PPP and SLIP devices. It can filter traffic to be shown, and can read traffic from a file as well as live from the network
- Ettercap: A terminal-based network sniffer/interceptor/logger for ethernet LANs. It supports active and passive dissection of many protocols (even ciphered ones, like ssh and https). Data injection in an established connection and filtering on the fly is also possible, keeping the connection synchronized. Many sniffing modes were implemented to give you a powerful and complete sniffing suite. Plugins are supported. It has the ability to check whether you are in a switched LAN or not, and to use OS fingerprints (active or passive) to let you know the geometry of the LAN. Requirement: Windows/Linux/Mac OS X
- Flawfinder: Program that scans C/C++ source code and reports potential security flaws. By default, it sorts its reports by risk level (the riskiest operations in the code are listed first). Requirement: Python 1.5 or greater
- fping: A ping(1) like program which uses the Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) echo request to determine if a host is up. fping is different from ping in that you can specify any number of hosts on the command line, or specify a file containing the lists of hosts to ping. Instead of trying one host until it timeouts or replies, fping will send out a ping packet and move on to the next host in a round-robin fashion. If a host replies, it is noted and removed from the list of hosts to check. If a host does not respond within a certain time limit and/or retry limit it will be considered unreachable.
- fragroute: Features a simple ruleset language to delay, duplicate, drop, fragment, overlap, print, reorder, segment, source-route, or otherwise monkey with all outbound packets destined for a target host, with minimal support for randomized or probabilistic behaviour.
- Fragrouter: A one-way fragmenting router – IP packets get sent from the attacker to the Fragrouter, which transforms them into a fragmented data stream to forward to the victim
- Gendarme: An extensible rule-based tool to find problems in .NET applications and libraries. Gendarme inspects programs and libraries that contain code in ECMA CIL format (Mono and .NET) and looks for common problems with the code, problems that compilers do not typically check or have not historically checked. Requirement: .NET (Mono or MS runtime)
- GnuPG: GnuPG allows to encrypt and sign your data and communication, features a versatile key managment system as well as access modules for all kind of public key directories. GnuPG, also known as GPG, is a command line tool with features for easy integration with other applications.
- Helix: A customized distribution of the Knoppix Live Linux CD. Helix is more than just a bootable live CD. You can still boot into a customized Linux environment that includes customized Linux kernels, excellent hardware detection and many applications dedicated to Incident Response and Forensics. Helix has been designed very carefully to NOT touch the host computer in any way and it is forensically sound. Helix will not auto mount swap space, or auto mount any attached devices. Helix also has a special Windows autorun side for Incident Response and Forensics
- Honeyd: A small daemon that creates virtual hosts on a network. The hosts can be configured to run arbitrary services, and their TCP personality can be adapted so that they appear to be running certain versions of operating systems. Honeyd enables a single host to claim multiple addresses on a LAN for network simulation. It is possible to ping the virtual machines, or to traceroute them. Any type of service on the virtual machine can be simulated according to a simple configuration file. It is also possible to proxy services to another machine rather than simulating them
- Hping2: Handy little utility assembles and sends custom ICMP, UDP, or TCP packets and then displays any replies. It was inspired by the ping command, but offers far more control over the probes sent. It also has a handy traceroute mode and supports IP fragmentation. This tool is particularly useful when trying to traceroute/ping/probe hosts behind a firewall that blocks attempts using the standard utilities. This often allows you to map out firewall rulesets. It is also great for learning more about TCP/IP and experimenting with IP protocols. Requirement: Windows/Linux/Mac OS X
- ike-scan: Exploits transport characteristics in the Internet Key Exchange (IKE) service, the mechanism used by VPNs to establish a connection between a server and a remote client. It scans IP addresses for VPN servers by sending a specially crafted IKE packet to each host within a network. Most hosts running IKE will respond, identifying their presence. The tool then remains silent and monitors retransmission packets. These retransmission responses are recorded, displayed and matched against a known set of VPN product fingerprints. Ike-scan can VPNs from manufacturers including Checkpoint, Cisco, Microsoft, Nortel, and Watchguard
- IP Filter: Portable UNIX Packet Filter. Software package that can be used to provide network address translation (NAT) or firewall services. It can either be used as a loadable kernel module or incorporated into your UNIX kernel; use as a loadable kernel module where possible is highly recommended. Scripts are provided to install and patch system files, as required. IP Filter is distributed with FreeBSD, NetBSD, and Solaris.
- John the Ripper: A fast password cracker, currently available for many flavors of Unix (11 are officially supported, not counting different architectures), DOS, Win32, BeOS, and OpenVMS. Its primary purpose is to detect weak Unix passwords. It supports several crypt(3) password hash types which are most commonly found on various Unix flavors, as well as Kerberos AFS and Windows NT/2000/XP LM hashes
- Kismet: A console (ncurses) based 802.11 layer2 wireless network detector, sniffer, and intrusion detection system. It identifies networks by passively sniffing (as opposed to more active tools such as NetStumbler), and can even decloak hidden (non-beaconing) networks if they are in use. It can automatically detect network IP blocks by sniffing TCP, UDP, ARP, and DHCP packets, log traffic in Wireshark/TCPDump compatible format, and even plot detected networks and estimated ranges on downloaded maps. Requirements: Windows/Linux/Mac OS X
- Knoppix: Consists of a representative collection of GNU/Linux software, automatic hardware detection, and support for many graphics cards, sound cards, SCSI and USB devices and other peripherals. KNOPPIX can be used as a productive Linux system for the desktop, educational CD, rescue system, or as many nmap survey takers attest, a portable security tool.
- Libwhisker: A Perl module geared geared towards HTTP testing. It provides functions for testing HTTP servers for many known security holes, particularly the presence of dangerous CGIs
- Metasploit: The framework is an advanced open-source platform for developing, testing, and using exploit code. This project initially started off as a portable network game and has evolved into a powerful tool for penetration testing, exploit development, and vulnerability research. Requirement: Win32 / UNIX
- Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA): Tool designed for the IT professional that helps small- and medium-sized businesses determine their security state in accordance with Microsoft security recommendations and offers specific remediation guidance. Improve your security management process by using MBSA to detect common security misconfigurations and missing security updates on your computer systems.
- Nagios: An open source host, service and network monitoring program. It watches hosts and services that you specify, alerting you when things go bad and when they get better. Some of its many features include monitoring of network services (smtp, pop3, http, nntp, ping, etc.), monitoring of host resources (processor load, disk usage, etc.), and contact notifications when service or host problems occur and get resolved (via email, pager, or user-defined method)
- NBTscan: A program for scanning IP networks for NetBIOS name information. It sends NetBIOS status query to each address in supplied range and lists received information in human readable form. For each responded host it lists IP address, NetBIOS computer name, logged-in user name and MAC address.
- Netfilter: A powerful packet filter implemented in the standard Linux kernel. The userspace iptables tool is used for configuration. It now supports packet filtering (stateless or stateful), all kinds of network address and port translation (NAT/NAPT), and multiple API layers for 3rd party extensions. It includes many different modules for handling unruly protocols such as FTP
- NetStumbler: A Free Windows 802.11 Sniffer. Known for finding open wireless access points (“wardriving”). They also distribute a WinCE version for PDAs and such named Ministumbler.
- Nikto: Web server scanner which performs comprehensive tests against web servers for multiple items, including over 3200 potentially dangerous files/CGIs, versions on over 625 servers, and version specific problems on over 230 servers.Requirement: Windows/UNIX
- Ntop: Shows network usage in a way similar to what top does for processes. In interactive mode, it displays the network status on the user’s terminal. In Web mode, it acts as a Web server, creating an HTML dump of the network status. It sports a NetFlow/sFlow emitter/collector, an HTTP-based client interface for creating ntop-centric monitoring applications, and RRD for persistently storing traffic statistics.
- Oedipus: A web application security analysis and testing suite written in Ruby. It is capable of parsing different types of log files off-line and identifying security vulnerabilities. Using the analyzed information, Oedipus can dynamically test web sites for application and web server vulnerabilities. Requirement: OS Independent
- OllyDbg: A 32-bit assembler level analyzing debugger for Microsoft Windows. Emphasis on binary code analysis makes it particularly useful in cases where source is unavailable. OllyDbg features an intuitive user interface, advanced code analysis capable of recognizing procedures, loops, API calls, switches, tables, constants and strings, an ability to attach to a running program, and good multi-thread support. OllyDbg is free to download and use but no source code is provided
- OpenBSD: Produces a free, multi-platform 4.4BSD-based UNIX-like operating system. Our efforts emphasize portability, standardization, correctness, proactive security and integrated cryptography. OpenBSD supports binary emulation of most programs from SVR4 (Solaris), FreeBSD, Linux, BSD/OS, SunOS and HP-UX
- OpenBSD Packet Filter (OpenBSD PF): Handles network address translation, normalizing TCP/IP traffic, providing bandwidth control, and packet prioritization. It also offers some eccentric features, such as passive OS detection.
- OpenSSH: A FREE version of the SSH connectivity tools that technical users of the Internet rely on. Users of telnet, rlogin, and ftp may not realize that their password is transmitted across the Internet unencrypted, but it is. OpenSSH encrypts all traffic (including passwords) to effectively eliminate eavesdropping, connection hijacking, and other attacks. Additionally, OpenSSH provides secure tunneling capabilities and several authentication methods, and supports all SSH protocol versions. The OpenSSH suite replaces rlogin and telnet with the ssh program, rcp with scp, and ftp with sftp. Also included is sshd (the server side of the package), and the other utilities like ssh-add, ssh-agent, ssh-keysign, ssh-keyscan, ssh-keygen and sftp-server
- Open Source Security Testing Methodology Manual (OSSTMM): This manual is to set forth a standard for Internet security testing.
- OSSEC HIDS: An Open Source Host-based Intrusion Detection System.
OSSEC HIDS performs log analysis, integrity checking, rootkit detection, time-based alerting and active response. In addition to its IDS functionality, it is commonly used as a SEM/SIM solution. Because of its powerful log analysis engine, ISPs, universities and data centers are running OSSEC HIDS to monitor and analyze their firewalls, IDSs, web servers and authentication logs
- Paros: This is for people who need to evaluate the security of their web applications. It is completely written in Java. All HTTP and HTTPS data between server and client, including cookies and form fields, can be intercepted and modified. Requirement: Cross-platform, Java JRE/JDK 1.4.2 or above
- P0f: A versatile passive OS fingerprinting tool. Able to identify the operating system of a target host simply by examining captured packets even when the device in question is behind an overzealous packet firewall. P0f does not generate ANY additional network traffic, direct or indirect. No name lookups, no mysterious probes, no ARIN queries, nothing. In the hands of advanced users, P0f can detect firewall presence, NAT use, existence of load balancers, and more!
- PuTTY: A free implementation of Telnet and SSH for Win32 and Unix platforms, along with an xterm terminal emulator. Use of PuTTY, PSCP, PSFTP and Plink is illegal in countries where encryption is outlawed.
- Root Kit Hunter: A Unix scanning tool that checks for signs of various pieces of nasty software on your system like rootkits, backdoors and local exploits. It runs many tests, including MD5 hash comparisons, default filenames used by rootkits, wrong file permissions for binaries, and suspicious strings in LKM and KLD modules
- Sam Spade: Provides a consistent GUI and implementation for many handy network query tasks. It was designed with tracking down spammers in mind, but can be useful for many other network exploration, administration, and security tasks. It includes tools such as ping, nslookup, whois, dig, traceroute, finger, raw HTTP web browser, DNS zone transfer, SMTP relay check, website search, and more. Non-Windows users can enjoy online versions of many of their tools
- Scapy: A powerful interactive packet manipulation tool, packet generator, network scanner, network discovery tool, and packet sniffer. It provides classes to interactively create packets or sets of packets, manipulate them, send them over the wire, sniff other packets from the wire, match answers and replies, and more. Interaction is provided by the Python interpreter, so Python programming structures can be used (such as variables, loops, and functions). Report modules are possible and easy to make.
- Sguil: (pronounced sgweel) Built by network security analysts for network security analysts. Sguil’s main component is an intuitive GUI that provides realtime events from Snort/barnyard. It also includes other components which facilitate the practice of Network Security Monitoring and event driven analysis of IDS alerts
- Socat: A utility similar to the venerable Netcat that works over a number of protocols and through a files, pipes, devices (terminal or modem, etc.), sockets (Unix, IP4, IP6 – raw, UDP, TCP), a client for SOCKS4, proxy CONNECT, or SSL, etc. It provides forking, logging, and dumping, different modes for interprocess communication, and many more options. It can be used, for example, as a TCP relay (one-shot or daemon), as a daemon-based socksifier, as a shell interface to Unix sockets, as an IP6 relay, for redirecting TCP-oriented programs to a serial line, or to establish a relatively secure environment (su and chroot) for running client or server shell scripts with network connections
- SPIKE Proxy: An open source HTTP proxy for finding security flaws in web sites. It is part of the Spike Application Testing Suite and supports automated SQL injection detection, web site crawling, login form brute forcing, overflow detection, and directory traversal detection Requirement: Python and pyOpenSSL
- Splunk: Used to monitor, report and analyze live streaming IT data as well as terabytes of historical data – located on-premises or in the cloud.
- Stunnel: Designed to work as an SSL encryption wrapper between remote client and local (inetd-startable) or remote server. It can be used to add SSL functionality to commonly used inetd daemons like POP2, POP3, and IMAP servers without any changes in the programs’ code. It will negotiate an SSL connection using the OpenSSL or SSLeay libraries
- SuperScan: A free Windows-only closed-source TCP/UDP port scanner by Foundstone. It includes a variety of additional networking tools such as ping, traceroute, http head, and whois
- Sysinternals: Provides many small windows utilities that are quite useful for low-level windows hacking. Some are free of cost and/or include source code, while others are proprietary.
- Tcpdump: This is the IP sniffer we all used before Ethereal (Wireshark) came on the scene, and many of us continue to use it frequently. It may not have the bells and whistles (such as a pretty GUI or parsing logic for hundreds of application protocols) that Wireshark has, but it does the job well and with fewer security holes. It also requires fewer system resources. While it doesn’t receive new features often, it is actively maintained to fix bugs and portability problems. It is great for tracking down network problems or monitoring activity. Requirement: Windows/Linux/ Mac OS X
- THC Hydra: A Fast network authentication cracker which supports many different services. It can perform rapid dictionary attacks against more then 30 protocols, including telnet, ftp, http, https, smb, several databases, and much more.
- Tor: A toolset for a wide range of organizations and people that want to improve their safety and security on the Internet. Using Tor can help you anonymize web browsing and publishing, instant messaging, irc, ssh, and other applications that use the TCP protocol. Tor also provides a platform on which software developers can build new applications with built-in anonymity, safety, and privacy features.
- TrueCrypt: An open source disk encryption system. Users can encrypt entire filesystems, which are then on-the-fly encrypted/decrypted as needed without user intervention beyond entering their passphrase intially. A clever hidden volume feature allows you to hide a 2nd layer of particularly sensitive content with plausible deniability about whether it exists. Then if you are forced to give up your passphrase, you give them the first-level secret. Even with that, attackers cannot prove that a second level key even exists.
- Unicornscan: A User-land Distributed TCP/IP stack for information gathering and correlation. It is intended to provide a researcher a superior interface for introducing a stimulus into and measuring a response from a TCP/IP enabled device or network. Some of its features include asynchronous stateless TCP scanning with all variations of TCP flags, asynchronous stateless TCP banner grabbing, and active/passive remote OS, application, and component identification by analyzing responses
- WebScarab: A loose suite of web application security assessment tools written entirely in Java. It is a tool primarily designed to be used by developers who can write code themselves. Requirement: OS Indpendent
- Wikto: Tool that checks for flaws in webservers. It provides much the same functionality as Nikto but adds various interesting pieces of functionality, such as a Back-End miner and close Google integration. Wikto is written for the MS .NET environment and registration is required to download the binary and/or source code.
- Wireshark: Wireshark, formerly known as Ethereal, is used by network professionals around the world for troubleshooting, analysis, software and protocol development, and education. It has all of the standard features you would expect in a protocol analyzer, and several features not seen in any other product. Requirement: Unix, Linux, and Windows
- Yersinia: A multi-protocol low-level attack tool useful for penetration testing. It is capable of many diverse attacks over multiple protocols, such as becoming the root role in the Spanning Tree (Spanning Tree Protocol), creating virtual CDP (Cisco Discovery Protocol) neighbors, becoming the active router in a HSRP (Hot Standby Router Protocol) scenario, faking DHCP replies, and other low-level attacks
- ZeroDayScan: Works from the cloud, detects cross site scripting attacks, hidden directories and backup files. Looks for known security vulnerabilities. Does not supports scanning in specific sub-directories. As a workaround, we advise you relocate your webscript from a sub-directory to a subdomain and in this case it will be scanned without any problem
Note: Most of the product descriptions were taken from the applications site. Applications were listed in alphabetical order so there are no favorites since the tool you pick is based on need.
What are your thoughts on these tools? Do you know of any others that I may have missed?
Updated On: 11/14/2010